Optimal treatment of jugular foramen schwannomas

Acta Neurochir (2017) 159:1517–1527

The goal of treatment for jugular foramen schwannomas (JFSs) is to achieve complete tumor removal with cranial nerve preservation. However, achieving this goal remains a challenge despite the advances in microsurgical techniques. The aim of this study was to determine optimal treatment strategies for JFSs based on a review of a series of 29 surgical cases in our institute.

Materials and methods: Between 1997 and 2013, 29 patients with JFSs underwent surgical treatment by multidisciplinary otoneurosurgical approaches. We retrospectively evaluated various clinical outcomes including the extent of tumor resection, postoperative cranial nerve deficits, and the recurrence rate. Tumor extension was classified using the Kaye and Pellet classification (KPC) system, and the extent of tumor resection was graded as gross total resection (GTR), near total resection (NTR), and subtotal resection (STR). We utilized the House- Brackmann facial nerve grading system (HBFNGS), the average pure-tone audiometry and speech audiometry (PTA/SA) tests, and the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association National Outcome Measurement System (ASHA NOMS) swallowing scale (ASHA level) for assessment of functional outcomes.

Results: The extent of tumor resection was not related to the degree of immediate postoperative cranial nerve deficits. However, the surgical approach was significantly related to postoperative hearing status and immediate postoperative facial function. Also, among the ten patients who were below the level of acceptable facial function immediately postoperatively, nine patients (90%) recovered to acceptable facial function by the last follow-up. Concerning postoperative swallowing status, all 21 patients recovered swallowing function by the last follow-up. Postoperative Gamma Knife stereotactic radiosurgery (GKRS) was performed for three recurrent and seven residual tumors, and recurrence was not observed in the mean 36-month follow-up period.

Conclusions: A surgical strategy should be tailored to the individual case, and clinicians should consider the possibility of recurrence and further adjuvant treatment.

Suprajugular extension of the retrosigmoid approach

Suprajugular extension retrosigmoid approach

J Neurosurg 121:397–407, 2014

Jugular foramen tumors often extend intra- and extracranially. The gross-total removal of tumors located both intracranially and intraforaminally is technically challenging and often requires a combined skull base approach. This study presents a suprajugular extension of the retrosigmoid approach directed through the osseous roof of the jugular foramen that allows the removal of tumors located in the cerebellopontine angle with extension into the upper part of the foramen, with demonstration of an illustrative case.

Methods. The cerebellopontine angles and jugular foramina were examined in dry skulls and cadaveric heads to clarify the microsurgical anatomy around the jugular foramen and to define the steps of the suprajugular exposure.

Results. The area drilled in the suprajugular approach is inferior to the acoustic meatus, medial to the endolymphatic depression and surrounding the superior half of the glossopharyngeal dural fold. Opening this area exposed the upper part of the jugular foramen and extended the exposure along the glossopharyngeal nerve below the roof of the jugular foramen. In the illustrative case, a schwannoma originating from the glossopharyngeal nerve in the cerebellopontine angle and extending below the roof of the jugular foramen and above the jugular bulb was totally removed without any postoperative complications.

Conclusions. The suprajugular extension of the retrosigmoid approach will permit removal of tumors located predominantly in the cerebellopontine angle but also extending into the upper part of the jugular foramen without any additional skull base approaches.

Microsurgical Management of Jugular Foramen Schwannomas

Primary Jugular Foramen Meningioma- Imaging Appearance and Differentiating Features1

Neurosurgery 72:42–46, 2013

Jugular foramen schwannomas are uncommon and surgically challenging lesions.

OBJECTIVE: To determine the importance of surgical technique on morbidity and recurrence of jugular foramen schwannomas.

METHODS: A retrospective review and case-control analysis of a single-senior-surgeon series of 81 patients with surgically treated jugular foramen schwannomas was performed, focusing on operative technique. Patients undergoing an aggressive, total tumor resection (series 1) were compared with those undergoing more conservative resection focusing on preserving the pars nervosa (series 2).

RESULTS: There was a statistically significant (P = .04) decrease in permanent deficits of the cranial nerve 9/10 complex with a conservative technique. Recurrence was seen in 3 patients (5.7%) in series 1 and in 3 patients (10.7%) in series 2 (P = .36). Recurrence was treated with reoperation in 1 patient, radiation in 1 patient, and observation in the others.

CONCLUSION: Although radical gross total resection is desirable, it is not optimal for cranial nerve preservation in patients with jugular foramen schwannomas. A more conservative approach resulted in a statistically significant decrease in lower cranial nerve deficits. There was a nonstatistically significant trend toward increasing recurrence, which may be treated with multiple modality therapy in the modern era.

Jugular foramen paragangliomas: management, outcome and avoidance of complications in a series of 75 cases

Neurosurg Rev (2012) 35:185–194. DOI 10.1007/s10143-011-0346-1

Jugular foramen paragangliomas are rare skull base tumours posing multiple complex diagnostic and management problems. We did a study to evaluate surgical technique, outcome and complications in 75 cases of tumours treated by multidisciplinary approach (i.e. combined neurosurgery, neuroradiology, ear, nose and throat surgery and intensive care unit team).
Methods: Retrospective study on 75 consecutive patients with jugular foramen paragangliomas treated surgically from 1989 to 2005. Preoperative balloon occlusion test was performed in all patients as well as embolization (100%). A combined limited infratemporal and juxtacondylar approach was used in all patients.
Results: Gross total resection was achieved in 59 patients (78.7%). The most common complication was represented by lower cranial nerve deficits in five patients (6.6%), which was only temporary in three. Postoperative facial nerve weakness occurred in five cases (6.6%) and resolved in three of them. The remaining two patients underwent facial nerve reconstruction by hypoglossal/facial nerve anastomosis. Four patients (5.3%) had a postoperative cerebrospinal fluid leak, which was successfully treated by lumbar drainage. Two patients (2.7%) died because of complications related to surgical injury of lower cranial nerves: one patient developed aspiration pneumonia and septicemia and the second one developed a large cervicobulbar hematoma that led to severe respiratory distress and ultimately global cerebral hypoxia.
Conclusion: Paragangliomas are rare and complex skull base lesions that may be managed with low morbidity and mortality if a multidisciplinary approach is considered. Facial and lower cranial nerve postoperative deficits can be limited.

Fully Endoscopic Transnasal Approach to the Jugular Foramen: Anatomic Study and Clinical Considerations

Neurosurgery 67[ONS Suppl 1]:ons00-ons00, 2010. DOI: 10.1227/01.NEU.0000354351.00684.B9

To describe a transnasal endoscopic route to the jugular foramen and the endoscopic anatomy of the infratemporal fossa.

CLINICAL PRESENTATION: Endoscopic transnasal dissection of the infratemporal fossa was performed in 3 injected fresh heads (1 head only in arteries and 2 heads in arteries and veins). Two other double-injected specimens were dissected externally (2 of them side laterally and 1 anteriorly) to compare the different views and better understand the 3-dimensionality of the region. Detailed endoscopic anatomy of the infratemporal fossa was clearly observed. The realization of a septal and posterior maxillary window allows surgeons to gain space to the jugular foramen. The ability to manage the vessels, especially the veins, and identify the muscles is mandatory. The fundamental role of the vidian canal in targeting the anterior genu of the internal carotid artery is confirmed. The role of the maxillary and mandibular branches of the trigeminal nerve and the eustachian tube in this kind of approach is critical.

CONCLUSION: A fully transnasal endoscopic route to the jugular foramen is feasible. The most important landmark for this kind of approach is the eustachian tube.

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